NZ adventure travel, that is: fishing, hiking, skiing, and mountain climbing vacations to New Zealand are becoming increasingly popular. New Zealand's rich cultural history and diverse natural wonders entice visitors from all parts of the globe.
New Zealand, located in the south Pacific about 1250 miles east of Australia, consists of two islands - called the North and the South Island. The country was first settled by Polynesians between 800 and 1300 AD, who formed the unique Maori culture. Later, Europeans, led by explorer James Cook, settled on the islands and today, most of the population is descended from the early Dutch and British inhabitants.
New Zealand is a startlingly beautiful country, with rugged and contrasting vistas. Among the natural highlights are Mt. Cook and Milford Sound on the South Island and Hawke's Bay on the North Island. New Zealand has become a favorite of filmmakers and several recent movies were shot there, most notably the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Fly-fishing in New Zealand
Fly-fishing is one of the most popular types of NZ adventure travel. In fact, the country offers some of the best rainbow and brown trout fishing in the world. Among the best spots for fishing in New Zealand are the Wairau River in the Nelson/Marlbourgh area at the top of the South Island; the Gowan, Travers, and Motueka Rivers in the Nelson Lakes area; and the Buller River at the bottom of Lake Rotoiti.
Other NZ Adventures
Other popular New Zealand adventure activities include whitewater rafting, skiing in the Southern Alps and atop the Franz Josef Glacier, and bungee jumping from Skipper's Canyon and other sites; mountain climbing; and hiking. Whatever your interests, you're sure to find an activity in New Zealand to appeal to you.
Exploring New Zealand's Cities
As rugged, wild, and charming as New Zealand's countryside is, the country's cities also offer a wealth of treasure to explore. Among them are:
- Queenstown - Located on New Zealand's South Island, Queenstown is a natural - and scenic - starting point for a NZ adventure trip. Situated at the edge of Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown has a majestic view of the Southern Alps. Queenstown is near one of New Zealand's major wine growing regions and other activities generally involve the outdoors, such as hiking, cycling, fishing, skiing, and white-water rafting. You can also take one of the many flightseeing trips for a closer look at this beautiful area.
- Christchurch - Called the "garden city," Christchurch is the largest city on New Zealand's south island. It's the ideal starting point for an adventure trip to this part of the country. Among the sights in Christchurch are the Anglican Cathedral in the center of the city; the Canterbury Museum, with its many Maori history and cultural exhibits; and the Botanic Garden.
- Auckland - Auckland, on New Zealand's North Island, is the country's largest city. The city, which sits right on the water, is sometimes called the "City of Sails," for all of the yachts that call this harbor home. Among the many sights in Auckland are the Sky Tower, the Auckland Zoo, the Museum of Transport and Technology, and the eclectic Otara Flea Market.
Booking NZ Adventure Travel
A number of tour companies, such as New Zealand Adventure Tours and Air New Zealand Holidays specialize in travel to New Zealand. In addition, specialty travel companies for fishing, hiking, and other adventures offer customized tours for groups and individuals. A travel agent experienced in South Pacific travel can help you sort through the many options to find the one that's best for you.